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By KOHA Staff, 01/11/21, 4:15PM EST


KOHA is extremely excited to announce our next guest lineup for our Zoom Coaches College Series on Sunday, Jan. 17th at 6pm.

We are a development-based club, and believe that must encompass the entire athlete/person and family. Since the spring of 2020 especially, our Hockey Director, Matt Kakabeeke has been a part of routine conversations about player (and parent) mental health concerns based on the impact/implications of the pandemic. Given that this hockey season has been affected so tremendously as a result of various shut-downs and pauses, our January Zoom Coaches College seemed like the perfect opportunity to tap into the topic (in fact, The Toronto Sun published an article last week on this).

Joining our coaches and membership to lead the Zoom call is Dave Marks, the Mental Skills Coach for the Chicago Blackhawks, and his colleague Alexandra Task.

David Marks, founder of group psychotherapy practice Marks & Associates, earned his Master of Clinical Psychology from Finch University of Health Sciences/Chicago Medical School. As a Mental Skills Coach, his work with the Blackhawks focuses on sports performance and player development. Dave deeply believes in the power of an integrated approach to the training of athletes. This is an approach that combines the physical training with the mental skills development to bring out the very best in the athlete and the person.

His expertise includes both helping athletes grow (enhancing performance, preparation techniques, etc.), and helping them overcome challenges (setbacks like loss and injury, anxiety, depression, life changes, etc.). He works with professional and amateur athletes involved in sports such as triathlon, running, hockey, football, soccer, and mountain climbing. The Chicago Blackhawks, DanceWorks Chicago, USA Gymnastics, and recently an Indy car team are among the organizations that he works with.

Dave has been an athlete most of his life, competing in football and rugby when younger and enjoying the challenges of long course triathlon these days.

Alexandra (Alex) Raske, MA, is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Mental Skills Coach at  Marks & Associates. She has a Master’s Degree in Counseling from Adler University with a  specialization in Sport and Health Psychology. She specializes in anxiety, depression, and  trauma-focused therapy. Her sport psychology expertise includes sports performance coaching,  overcoming setbacks (i.e. losses and injuries), pre-performance/race-day/game-day techniques  and approaches, and other challenges athletes face day-to-day. Her goal is to apply mental skills  to maximize performance for individual athletes and sports teams and create a space for  athletes to feel comfortable discussing more personal concerns. 

A former collegiate student-athlete herself, Alex works with athletes at the high school and  college level as well as consulting with coaches about the performance of their teams. Currently working with adolescents and young adults to overcome challenges brought on by COVID-19.

We look forward to having our coaches and our membership families join us for what is sure to be an incredibly insightful call!



In this short clip, Tampa Bay Lightning Assistant Coach, Derek Lalonde, talked to KOHA coaches and parents about winning the Stanley Cup in the NHL bubble amidst a pandemic.

The entire presentation can be found on our YouTube channel, but here is a 2 minute clip where he talks about the MOST IMPORTANT person in the bubble that helped them find success - their sports psychologist.

Take two minutes to watch and then be sure to join us for our Zoom Coaches College Series on January 17th @6pm with the Chicago Blackhawks Mental Skills Coach, Dave Marks, and his colleague Alexandra Raske.